Boise State Athletics to Add Sand Volleyball in 2014
Shawn Garus will be the head coach.

Aug 29, 2013

BOISE, Idaho - Boise State University Executive Director of Athletics Mark Coyle announced today the addition of women’s sand volleyball to the list of sports sponsored by the Broncos. The Boise State Board of Trustees gave its approval to add the sport at its last board meeting in Pocatello. The newest addition to the Bronco family, which will begin competing this spring, continues Boise State’s focus on increasing opportunities for women to compete at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics. Sand volleyball becomes the third women’s sport added by Boise State in the last eight years joining swimming & diving (2006) and softball (2007).

“We feel the addition of sand volleyball will help give our current volleyball team a competitive edge as we continue to grow the program,” Coyle stated.  “I’m excited about the direction Coach Garus has our program headed and look forward to what I feel will be an exciting addition to Bronco athletics.”

NCAA sand volleyball began with 15 teams in 2012 then doubled in size this past spring with 16 more.  At this time Boise State is the seventh school to announce the addition of the sport in 2014 joining Arizona, Arizona State, Cal Poly, Louisiana State, UC Irvine and South Carolina bringing the total number of teams nationwide to 38.

Boise State is the first school to add sand volleyball in the Pacific Northwest and Intermountain regions, as well as the Mountain West Conference. Other schools in the region and conference reportedly exploring the addition of the sport include: San Jose State, Air Force, Colorado State, Oregon, Colorado, Utah, Washington and Washington State.

Sand volleyball gives Boise State athletics 20 intercollegiate teams, 12 on the women’s side (basketball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, indoor and outdoor track & field, volleyball and sand volleyball) and eight for men (basketball, cross country, football, golf, tennis, indoor and outdoor track & field, and wrestling).

Shawn Garus the head coach for the volleyball (indoor) team will take on that duty for both programs on a permanent basis.

“I am excited for the opportunity to coach sand volleyball at Boise State,” said Garus. “This is not only going to benefit our current volleyball players, but will increase opportunities for other women to compete in this sport on our campus. It’s a great sport that has grown in popularity since being added to the Olympics. I look forward to running camps, clinics and tournaments to help grow sand volleyball in the Boise area.”

Garus has a solid background in the sand (beach) game as a member of the Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP) and competing off and on for 12 years (1995-2007) in the association’s Pro Beach Volleyball Tour in tournaments such as the Huntington Beach and Manhattan Beach Opens, to name a few.

Shawn (Garus) is an amazing player and will be a huge asset to growing the beach game in Idaho,” said Jake Gibb a two-time U.S.A. Olympic beach volleyball player and member of the 2012 No. 1 ranked FIVB tour team. “What a great opportunity for all involved. Exciting times!!”

Initially the Bronco sand volleyball team will be composed of members from the current volleyball program, many of which had experience in sand volleyball during their high school careers. Most notably were sophomore setter Sarah Baugh a standout in Washington and freshman libero Hannah Hubbard from southern California, both were highly accomplished sand volleyball players in the prep ranks of their respective states.

“I am extremely excited for the sand program at Boise State. It is a terrific opportunity to play more volleyball with an excellent coach and great teammates, and most importantly the opportunity to represent Boise State,” commented Baugh. “I am extremely proud to be apart of the inaugural  season and my goal is to successfully compete with the best programs in the country and put Boise State sand volleyball on the national map.”

“Coming from California I was really sad to leave the beach because I have always had such a passion for playing in the sand,” said Hubbard. “I was so excited when I heard Boise State was adding a sand program. I love playing sand volleyball and cannot wait to get the program going and start competing. Under the leadership of coach Garus, I know this program will succeed and I can’t wait to continue my career in the sand playing for him.”

Coach Garus will begin work on a schedule immediately for the spring season which begins in late spring and runs through the championship tournament the first week of May. It is unlikely that the Broncos would host any matches during its first season.

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